Originally Naan was a generic word for any bread but now it has come to be associated with the popular leavened Indian bread. In India Naan is not made at home because people do not have the Tandoor or clay oven, it is eaten at restaurants. Tandoor ovens can heat up to 800 degrees F which is impossible to do in a standard oven. My technique of preheating the oven at the highest setting and cooking Naan under the broiler results in soft Naans that do not dry out.
Try a batch, you will fall in love with fresh Naan!
3/4 cup warm milk
1 1/2 tsps. sugar
1 tsp. yeast
3/4 tsp. salt
2 tbsps. yogurt, beaten
1 tbsp. ghee or oil
2 1/8 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp. onion seeds (optional)
1/4 cup all purpose flour for dusting
1 tsp. ghee or melted butter for brushing on the Naan
- Adjust oven rack so it is 6 inches away from the broiler.
- Preheat oven to 150 degrees F then turn it off.
- In a bowl, mix warm milk, sugar and yeast. Stir and set aside in a warm place for 10-15 minutes.
- When yeast turns foamy, add salt, yogurt, ghee, stir.
- Mix in the flour and knead lightly for a minute or two into a soft dough, dusting lightly with flour to keep from sticking to the fingers.
- Cover the dough and place in warm oven for 20 minutes.
- Remove dough bowl from oven and set aside for another 15 minutes, dough will continue to rise (you can refrigerate dough for 2-3 days or freeze up to 6 months at this point).
- Place a cookie sheet in the oven and heat oven to 500 degrees F (about 15 minutes).
- Punch dough down and divide into 6 equal pieces.
- Dust surface with flour and roll each piece into an oval, sprinkling with a pinch of onion seeds.
- Turn broiler on high and let it heat up for 2-3 minutes.
- Place 2-3 Naans on heated cookie sheet and broil for about 1 1/2 minutes, Naan should be golden brown. If Naan is not lightly browned on the other side, flip it over and broil for 30-45 seconds, removing from the oven as soon as Naan starts to brown.
- Brush lightly with ghee or melted butter, serve hot with Butter Chicken or Matar Paneer.
- For each garlic Naan, mix together 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic, 1/4 teaspoon oil or ghee and a pinch of salt.
- Sprinkle on a half rolled Naan. Continue to roll Naan, pressing garlic pieces into the bread.
- Place on oven tray, garlic side up and broil as above.
Copyright © Rashmi Rustagi 2012. All Rights Reserved.